Travel editor Spud Hilton blows his own horn monthly with the Joyful Noise Jazz Band in El Sobrante.  The hot air goes in the skinny end and the metal thing transforms it into the joyful noise.  Copy isn't all that Spud makes sing.

April Chronicle Shop Notes

Send gossip, titillating trivia and scandal to: srubenstein@sfchronicle.com Who says an ergonomics workshop is ho-hum?  Not us.  In fact, it’s practically X-rated.  Consider these words of advice from the Chronicle’s amazing ergonomist, Anna Brock: “Some employees really want to be on top (of the desk)” and “You really have to …

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Press Democrat seeks concessions while Guild holds out for modest pay increases

Press Democrat management continues to cite uncertainty in the news industry, rising health care costs and other factors as limits on what it can offer employees. Guild negotiators, also cognizant of these realities, sought reasonable pay increases in the 3 to 5 percent range and to limit increases in escalating health care costs for employees. But management balked at the offer.

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Talks to combine East Bay and Merc units suspended until company offers pay increase

Guild members and staff met for a third time with DFM management today to discuss the company’s proposal to merge the BANG and Mercury News contracts. We opted to suspend these talks and return to bargaining each contract separately. Once again, the Company had no pay proposal for workers who would be covered by the merged contract, and the Company also continued to propose that advertising employees would lose union protection.

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Press Democrat offers anemic pay increase while demanding more for health care

Management is now proposing a 1 percent annual pay increase for employees who meet acceptable performance standards. Health care costs would remain the same for 2016, but by 2017, more of the financial burden would shift to employees and eventually there would be no cap on the employee share at all.

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Merc and East Bay members hold second combined session with DFM

Guild negotiators from the BANG-East Bay and San Jose Mercury News met with Digital First Media management in a joint session to discuss the company’s proposed consolidation of the two bargaining units.

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Press Democrat talks result in increased parenting and cell phone benes

The two sides agreed to a substantial increase in cell phone stipends from $50 to $65 per month. In addition, new rules will allow parents returning to work to seek a part-time schedule for up to one year so long as the scheduling needs can be worked out with a supervisor.

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Guild negotiators say: Show us the money!

Guild bargainers and PD management narrowed their differences on a new contract and reached new tentative agreements Thursday.

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Tentative agreement reached at Sac Bee, McClatchy Editorial Production Center

Guild and McClatchy negotiators emerged from day-long discussions Tuesday, Dec. 15 with a tentative agreement on a new 3-year contract that boosts advertising commissions, offers modest newsroom pays raises, preserves the newsroom morning shift bonus and ensures company car fleet for the life of the agreement. After two gentle bargaining sessions, the room was decidedly tenser Tuesday afternoon …

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Press Democrat workers recall sacrifices, seek some recovery

Guild negotiators have made it clear that employees expect to recover some of the ground they lost after they voluntarily agreed to significant concessions so that Sonoma Media Investments could complete its purchase of the paper in 2012.

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Guild-DFM talks shift to proposed new operations scheme

DFM management proposed to merge the separate San Jose and East Bay Guild bargaining units under one consolidated contract that would include all digital employees, who are not currently represented by the Guild.

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